[THE INVESTOR] South Korean education firm ST Unitas has acquired US-based college admission services provider The Princeton Review, the first such deal of its kind, Korea Economic Daily reported on Feb. 9.
Since its establishment in 2010, ST Unitas has become the top ranked academy for preparing students for various entrance exams as well as educating them in specific fields and languages. Some of the popular brands under its ambit include Young Dangi, Gong Dangi and Sky Edu.
The education firm’s revenue in 2016 reached about 400 billion won (US$349 million).
The report said ST Unitas has signed a stock trading agreement to acquire Match Group’s education division, which holds 100 percent stake in Princeton Review. The acquisition price has been estimated at more than 100 billion won.
Match Group, which is primarily a social dating company, decided to sell Princeton Review in order to improve its financial structure by discarding its non-core business.
With this acquisition, industry sources say ST Unitas will be able to build a strong base for its overseas education business by applying its affordable online courses, which have experienced great domestic success, to the Princeton Review platform.
“The online education market in the US is just booming, so the ST Unitas business model is expected to be successful,” an unnamed source was quoted as saying in the report.
The Princeton Review, which is based in New York, was established in 1981 to provide consulting, teaching and publishing services to students preparing for standardized tests such as SAT and GRE that are required for higher education in the US. More than 3.5 million people took the Princeton Review program and the institution is ranked as one of the top in its respective field.
By Alex Lee (firstname.lastname@example.org)